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Rapidshare Ordered To Filter Content 161

Posted by Soulskill
from the hope-you-like-busywork dept.
A Cow writes "TorrentFreak reports that the Regional Court in Hamburg, Germany, has ruled that file-hosting service Rapidshare must proactively filter certain content. Music industry outfit GEMA asked the court to ban Rapidshare from making 5,000 tracks from its catalogue available on the Internet." Reader biabia brings an update to a related case in Italy involving four Google executives. The issue in that situation revolves around Google's response time in taking down a video that was deemed to be a privacy violation. Google is worried that a verdict against them could lead to mandatory pre-screening of all public videos that are uploaded onto their websites. Those proceedings have now been postponed until late September.
Update: 6/24 at 17:45 GMT by SS: The article originally reported that Rapidshare was fined $34 million. No such fine has been imposed — $34 million was the estimated value of the tracks hosted on Rapidshare.
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Rapidshare Ordered To Filter Content

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  • Re:Surprised (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Zedrick (764028) on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @01:21PM (#28454967)
    And I don't get who they got so populair in the first place. I mean, in 1999 - on a 56k modem - I guess it was OK to download warez from websites, but today? Why would anyone choose that over Bittorrent or the thing that should not be mentioned (but starts with a "U")?
  • Finally (Score:4, Interesting)

    by mister_playboy (1474163) on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @01:23PM (#28454999)

    Indeed! The torrent sites have been getting all the flak, but direct download sites seem like the low hanging fruit to go after.

    The only reason to pay for their services is to access copyrighted material... that seems like monetizing copyright infringement to me.

    I'd like to see Google get caught up in this, because they have more than enough money to defend themselves.

  • Good (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @01:23PM (#28455007)

    Let the politicians and courts screw up the internet so bad that nothing but flash ads and porn are left, then we can can all use darknets. out of site out of mind.

  • fuck (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @01:24PM (#28455027)

    As long as they keep the ebooks which you really can't find anywhere else...that's the only reason I use Rapidshare. It's a goldmine of history books, some of them out of print but not out of copyright. In any case, via AvaxHome and Filestube it's saved me a lot of trips to the local university libraries.

  • Re:Surprised (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Dotren (1449427) on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @02:01PM (#28455775)

    I wish I could remember where I read this (maybe one of NYCL's blog posts) but it seems not one court case has been brought regarding illegal downloads via bittorrent. So far, everything has been through the Gnutella and related networks.

    For the ISP problem, with most bittorrent clients you can turn on variable levels of encryption. In Vuze (formerly Azureus) for example, you can have no encryption (default) all the way up to making sure you never connect to any peers or seeds that are not also using the same level of encryption.

    For that matter, I've wondered lately why encryption isn't turned on by default in most clients after installation. Of course I realize that it may be a performance issue but I've never seen any numbers on the resources used when requiring encryption versus not.

  • Re:Surprised (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Killer Orca (1373645) on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @02:18PM (#28456047)
    Speaking of fishing I am just learning to fish, anyone with useful how-to links would be greatly appreciated, and yes I have used the google.
  • Re:How to filter? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Rysc (136391) * <sorpigal@gmail.com> on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @02:21PM (#28456091) Homepage Journal

    The accepted way to do this is with JPEG + RAR. rar files with a garbage header are valid, jpegs with garbage at the end are valid. You simply rar your data, make a simple jpeg, cat simple.jpg data.rar > innocent.jpg and then upload.

  • Re:Surprised (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Zedrick (764028) on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @02:24PM (#28456139)
    It's a bit like fishing. Can be hard to get a good catch and you have to know where to look, but it's easier if you use something like nzbmatrix.com that indexes the fish.
  • Re:Imbeciles! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Timosch (1212482) on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @02:34PM (#28456289)
    If that was true, judges would have to apply the First Amendment only to messages transferred on horseback or directly, but not through the internet. Judges apply law as it is written, at least as long as it is clear.
  • Re:Surprised (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Dotren (1449427) on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @02:49PM (#28456517)

    HBO monitors torrents and sends cease and desist letters. A buddy of mine has quite a collection of them :)

    I haven't dug into this yet but I've been curious.. is it possible to get a list of clients without actually connecting to the tracker and sharing the material yourself? I've never tried to access a tracker directly to see what information you can get from it and I know that every bittorrent client I've tried so far seems to disconnect you from seeds and peers when you "stop" a torrent download. It would be interesting to see what methods the companies use to get the information on torrrents to send out those letters as it is hardly in their interest to share their own content, even in small bits, to discover who is connecting.

    With torrents (and similar), the swarm (rather than individual people) are redistributing. There are seeders, obviously, with a share ratio > 1, but many peers will only upload a small portion of the file and may never upload the entire file. Can the RIAA successfully sue someone for redistributing 20% of a song?

    Common sense would tell me no, or even if they can, that they'd only be able to sue for a fraction of the song's value. However, we all know this whole thing with the RIAA, MPAA, and copyright has little to do with common sense and the money they are suing for is massive compared to the value of the song anyways.

  • Re:Surprised (Score:3, Interesting)

    by 0100010001010011 (652467) on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @02:55PM (#28456623)

    Astraweb's deal for $11/month + NZBMatrix/TVNZB and I get stuff maxing out my cable connection.

    They have quite a bit of older stuff. I spent my first day going through NZBMatrix looking through OLD movies, opening the IMDB link and DLing everything over 7. Quite a few comedies from the 30s-70s with 7.9-8s that looked good.

  • Safe deposit boxes (Score:5, Interesting)

    by MobyDisk (75490) on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @04:09PM (#28457739) Homepage

    If I put a CD into a safe deposit box, and I share the key with people - and they go to the box, copy the CD, then put the CD back... is the bank liable?

  • by Grishnakh (216268) on Wednesday June 24, 2009 @05:17PM (#28458879)

    I don't see the problem. If Disney wants to keep Steamboat Willy under copyright, they should have to pay, say, $100 million/year to do that. This doesn't favor the rich, because probably no rich person is alive who could have created something valuable back then (if there is one alive, he's probably in a nursing home on a respirator about to die, and won't care about copyrights).

    The original copyright term in this country, 13 years, was plenty. We need to return to that. If you, an individual artist, can't come up with something new after riding 13 years on a profitable work, then that's just too bad. And 13 years is probably too much. 5 years is a better term, and after that you should start paying to keep it protected. If it's so valuable, you can certainly afford to pay some "copyright tax" to keep your copyright intact. If it isn't valuable enough for that, it needs to fall into the public domain.

    The current system of basically perpetual copyright only benefits corporations, because they don't die a few decades after they publish a work like humans do.

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